Russia detains 800 over pension protests
Written by Sunniva Kolostyak
Russian police detained 839 people for protesting Putin’s pension reform in demonstrations organised by jailed opposition leader.
OVD-Info, a rights organisation that monitors detentions, said 839 people had been detained by police on Sunday in 33 cities after they took part in demonstrations organised by opposition leader Alexei Navalny, Reuters wrote.
The organisation said 354 people were detained in St Petersburg where authorities had initially authorised a rally before reversing the decision.
Footage from the protests showed police using force against protesters, beating participants with batons and dragging them away.
The proposal, which has been protested since July, suggests raising the pension age to 60 for women and 65 for men. The current retirement age in Russia is 55 and 60. Russian President Vladimir Putin decided to dilute the pension reform after his popularity took a hit.
Russian life expectancy at birth in 2016 is 66 for men and 77 for women, according to the World Health Organisation.
Navalny, who is a known Kremlin critic, was jailed on 27 August for protesting the reform. Among the jailed were some of Navalny’s closest supporters, who also helped organise the protests.